20 Best Things to Do in Mammoth Lakes

20 Best Things to Do in Mammoth Lakes


Known as Mammoth, mammoth mountain, mammoth village and many such names, Mammoth lake is a town in California which is famous for its lakes and mountains.

With its far-reaching lakes and high mountains, the city is one of the most beautiful places in the entire state. It is also one of the most famous vacation destination among people who are enthusiastic about outdoor activities.

There are so many activities in mammoth that even if you spend months in the city, you would not be able to cover all the fun and adventure it has to offer. Set in the lap of nature, the activities are not only thrilling but also refreshing.

The following are the best activities to do if you are short on time and visiting the city:

Mammoth Lakes Welcome Center

Mammoth Lakes Welcome Center
Nandaro, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons


Mammoth lakes is one of those cities in the world where it is very advisable to visit their center. It is quite a helpful and friendly service which provides you a brief idea about what you can explore in the city.

You can also get details about the coming festivals and events in the city and plan for them in advance. The Centre also provides brochures and maps for the city.

It also has a gift shop which is ideal for buying some souvenirs and other gifts for your loved ones. For camping and adventurous activities in certain areas of the city, a special permit is required which is also collectable from the center only.

The location of the center is quite convenient without any detour and you can stop by to get an idea about the city while you are entering the city itself.

Hiking along the lakes

Hiking at Mammoth lake
Jim Cork / Shutterstock.com


Mammoth lakes is a perfect town when it comes to the number of lakes and hiking trails that it has. There are more than 20 lacks in the city and it is overwhelming to know the number of activities that could be done on these lakes.

The views of these lakes are also spectacular. Some of the most famous and suitable lakes for hiking are Horseshoe Lake, McLeod Lake, Crystal Lake, Lake Mary, Lake George, and many more. Some of these as well as other lakes have long and scenic trails which are well maintained and very famous for hiking.

Each hike trails have almost 4-5 lakes at the end and offers breathtaking views from all the directions. You can also take a guided tour of these lakes offered by locals of the city. In addition to that, the natural grounds and set up around the legs are also very beautiful and well accommodated with amenities.

Devils Postpile Rock formation

Devils postpile
yggdrasill / Shutterstock.com


Devils postpile is one of the most beautiful and recognized national Park in the entire United States. It is a national rock formation monument which will make you wonder about the art of nature.

The monument is located only 30 minutes’ drive away from the highway 203. While in the national Park, you will come across basalt columns which are believed to be in existence for more than 82,000 years.

It is believed that these columns were formed from cold lava and the composition of the Lava with different minerals is what resulted in their symmetrical shapes. These columns are so perfectly arranged that it is next to impossible to believe that these are natural occurring and not made by men.

Along with the columns, devils postpile is another place that you should definitely climb and get a view of the entire park from. The place also has some seasonal activities which you can enjoy at very affordable cost.

Rainbow Falls

Rainbow Falls
NatalieJean / Shutterstock.com


Located at a height of almost 6 miles after a trail, the rainbow Falls is a 101-foot waterfall in mammoth lake which is as beautiful as its name. The waterfall is a bit different from other water falls on earth, as you could easily spot a cute little rainbow on the top of the waterfall during the sunny hours.

There is a specific viewing platform to enable you to enjoy the views of the water. Using the platform and following its stairs, you can also go to the base of the waterfall.

Another small waterfall, known as lower Falls is located right next to rainbow waterfalls and ends in a beautiful big lake. Even though there is a huge difference in the size of both the waterfalls, you are experience will not defer and you would equally enjoy the visits to both of these falls.

Reds Meadow

Reds Meadow
Geartooth Productions / Shutterstock.com


Reds meadow is a very famous meadow ground which is open seasonally from the months of Mid July to early fall. It is one of the most beautiful and biggest middle ground in mammoth lake. This colorful ground is set between red’s Creek and Sotcher lake.

The place is famous to be ideal for camping, fishing, hygiene, and horseback riding during the summer months. It is also filled with spectacular yellow orange and crimson fall colors during the same months.

The place also has a resort, red Meadows resort. The place has an adventure center and a mammoth mountain Main Lodge which is the main parking available in the area. It has two treks, one of which is 12-mile-long and the other one which is just 1.5-mile-long, suitable for both professional as well as amateur Hikers.

Go See Wild Willy’s Hot Springs

Wild Willy's Hot spring
melissamn / Shutterstock.com


Hot springs are surely the new hot cake in nature areas and especially at the Mammoth Lakes. It is still considered a bit of a black horse as not everybody catches the glimpse of it due to the location beside a broad road and lack of markers. The area is flat in nature with long and narrow beautiful paths that give off a countryside vibe and the hot spring is in between. It is one of the most comfortable and warm water areas to sit around. One can take a nice warm bath with their family members at this warm spring too.

Hit the Ball at Numerous Golf Parks and Clubs


The pleasure of playing golf at the Mammoth Lakes becomes double because it is not only the broad, huge and lush greenery and pitch perfect courses that the player can play at but also the services and most importantly the backdrop or view in which the clubs are located.

The snow filled or silver peaks of mountains and tall alpine vegetation as your backdrop is sure to give you a surreal experience. Mammoth’s Sierra Star Golf Course, the Snowcreek Golf course, the Mammoth Rock N Bowl, Sequoia Woods are some of the most famous golf courses and parks.

Go Mountaneering and Climbing


Mountaineering and Climbing are possible activities throughout all the seasons at the Mammoth Lakes. In summer there terrains are friendly for all age groups and in winters ice climbing is a loved activity.

Guides are readily available to help you through the process. The Vie Ferrata, the Eastern Sierra range, Mammoth Adventure Center, the Skin Up Ski Routes, the Mammoth Lakes Trail system are all places from where you can make your climbing and mountaineering dream a reality. Once you are done climbing the view from peaks is no short of wonders.

Convict Lake

Convict Lake
Nithon / Shutterstock.com


Named after escaped convict from a prison in Nevada, Convict lake in the city is another lake which is quite different from all other lakes in the city and has made a different space in this list.

The lake is an ideal spot for hiking and camping. It also has cabins in case you are not very fond of camping. The lake has beautiful views and is covered with trees on all sides.

The leaves of these trees change colors during various seasons and adds to the already existing beauty of the lake. Surrounded by the mountain named after a sheriff, Mount Morrison, the lake is unbelievably deep and has crystal clear water that would let you look at your face just like a mirror does.

Minaret Summit Vista

View from Minaret Summer Vista
melissamn / Shutterstock.com


There are a large number of minarets in the city of mammoth lake and Minaret Summit Vista is one place that would give you the best view of all these sharp peaks located on different mountain ranges.

Places also a great spot to enjoy the sun rises and sunsets. Just like other places in the city, this place also has a trial with a small elevation of 246 feet. It also has a small restaurant where you can grab some refreshment.

The parking area of the place is quite spacious and has restrooms for your comfort.

Earthquake Fault

Earthquake Fault
T.Schofield / Shutterstock.com


Mammoth lake city is also famous for earthquake and faults around the world. The earthquake fault situated in the Inyo national forest is one such fault, however very big and noticeable.

It is believed that the area where this fault is situated was an active volcanic region and it was split open more than 600 years back. The fault is 10 feet wide and 60 feet deep which makes it quite scary and dangerous.

The land around this area is quite beautiful in an awkward way as it has cracks which divide the land into pieces like that of a jigsaw puzzle. It also has a very small Trail where you can enjoy a small walk.

This fault is located right in the middle of a forest so you can enjoy watching the trees and forest vegetation around the area. The authorities have also arranged for picnic tables and washrooms to make your visit comfortable.

Hot creek Geological Site

Hot creek Geological Site
Mohamed Selim / Shutterstock.com


Hot creek geological site is a natural wonder where you can find hot water bubbling from the ground. It is believed that the water is boiling due to the volcanic magma which is just 3 miles below the surface of the earth.

The water here is as hot as liquids at their boiling temperature and can easily burn anything. The place is not safe to visit but You can still enjoy from a few miles away. The entire location looks like a movie set as along with the main pool there are small streams with turquoise colored water.

However, there is a fence which would prevent you from going very close to the creek, it is still advisable that you enjoy these gorgeous yet dangerous waters from a safe distance.

Enjoy fall season and its colorful Bounty

Fall in Mammoth
Galyna Andrushko / Shutterstock.com


The city of mammoth in California is a perfect place for all those people who like to enjoy the fall season and its paradise filled with different colors.

All the lakes in the area are filled with colorful Foliage during the fall season and create a spell bounding view. You can also visit Eastern Sierra to enjoy a brilliant and magnificent yellow and orange colors.

However, the best views are seen during the months of Mid-September to Mid-October. June loop, one of the lakes in mammoth lake city situated in north is also famous for providing great picturesque views of the vibrant fall colors as the lake is covered with different hues during the season.

Other lakes such as Lake Lundy and Lake Virginia are also famous for the same reason. You can also enjoy fishing and hiding during the stores.

Mono Lake

Mono Lake
Bill45 / Shutterstock.com


Another lake which has been able to make its specific spot in this list is the mono lake. Mono lake is different from the other lakes in the city as it is believed to be the oldest lake in the entire North American region.

It is estimated that the lake is almost 3 million years old. It is an alkaline lake which has a PH value of 10, making it saltier than any ocean in the earth. Due to its extremely salty water, the lake has no fishes or other marine animals.

However, the lake is still covered with shrimps, algae and flies. The area of the lake is quite abandoned and silent so it is a good place if you want to enjoy some peaceful time.

Mammoth Mega Zip


Mammoth mega zip is one of the most adventurous activities which is organized in the area during the summer months.

This zip line is the biggest vertical drop zip line in the entire United states. When enjoying a zip line, you can also enjoy picturesque views of the mammoth mountains and other lakes around the areas.

There are two separate zip lines which have an elevation of around 2100 feet. It is one of its kind experience in the mammoth city and you should definitely not miss it.

Mountain Biking

Mountain Biking in Mammoth
Umomos / Shutterstock.com


Mountain biking is another adventure sport which is quite famous in the area. The mountains and other trails in the city are bike friendly so you can easily enjoy biking through these areas.

In order to make your experience more comfortable, there is also a bike renting facility and a bike park which is the largest in the United states, mammoth mountain bike park.

It also has its own trails and you can enjoy biking in the area of the park which is spread in over 80 miles. If you are someone who is trying mountain biking for the first time, it is advisable that you take some guidance from the expert service providers in the area.

Inyo Craters

Inyo Craters
KortneyCreates / Shutterstock.com


Inyo craters are other famous and enormous craters located in Mammoth scenic loop. These craters were formed 600 years ago due to enormous volcanic eruptions that resulted in separation of the grounds.

The craters are in the form of two holes which are filled with turquoise green water and looks like lakes. The lakes look prettiest during the early hours of the day.

There are also a few trails to reach to the crates. Just like the other places, it is also an enjoyable area in the city and cannot be missed.

Relax at Lake Mary

Lake Mary
George Lamson / Shutterstock.com


Located beside the Lake Mary Loop Road, this lake is surrounded by tall fine and alpine trees on all sides on the backdrop of mountains. When we say the water is blue, be ready to get amazed at how azure and turquoise it actually is.

The lake is huge in area and you would definitely not run out of things to do. The place is fit for having an entertaining time with ones family. Activities like boating with your entire family, siting by the lake for a nice picnic.

Fishing is another very popular activity done by locals and tourists. There are ample camping areas and vacation rentals around it even owing to its beauty.

Have a Sip at the Mammoth Brewing Company

It is time to quench your thirst from all that hiking and have a good glass of your preferred beer.

Even if you are not a beer person the company is single handedly one of the most fun and frolic stores in the Mammoth Lakes and buzzing with mouthwatering food.

There is space inside the house and upstairs to shit indoors but what really is beautiful and warm is the sitting area outside on a long stretch for the public to sit and have unleashed fun. The types of beers are a signature thing to try here.

Museums and Galleries Are a Must


The Mammoth Consolidated Mine, the Bodie State Historic Park, the Manzanar National Historic Park, The Mammoth Museum, the Bluebird Imaging, Southern Mono Historic Society, the Sierra Art Gallery, the Minaret Cinemas, the Gallery at Twin Lakes, the Vern Clevenger Gallery of Fine photography, the Mac Gallery and Art Theatre and a dozen more at the least.

Just because the Mammoth Lakes excels at being a destination known for its natural and scenic beauty does not mean that you would miss art, theatre, music, the beauty of creation, taste or shopping there! Year round fun and festivities, film festivals, concerts and shows are held throughout the town.

Watch a Good Show at Mamoth Lakes Repertory Theatre


What better way to end the show than with an actual show indoors at some of the best theatres at Sierra Nevada. After all that climbing, hiking and fishing, sitting at the warmth of a beautiful gallery and watching a good performance is all you would want for sure!

The Sierra Repertory Theatre, the Edison Theatre, the Fox Theatres, the Stage 3 Theatre Company, the Merced Theatre, the list goes on. To complete your Mammoth Lakes trip, a visit to one of these and a nice show should be a must in your plan!

Go skiing and enjoy the snow

Skiing in Mammoth
jannoon028 / Shutterstock.com


The City of mammoth changes its form during the winter season. Covered with snow, the mountains of the city are some of the best places in the California to enjoy skiing and other snowboarding activities.

It is also believed that the mammoth mountain is the most famous ski boarding location in the state. The snow adventures can be enjoyed from mid-November until mid-June.

You can also stop at the Booky joint and buy some souvenirs and gifts for your loved ones. It is one of the oldest shops in the city, established in 1975 and has a great collection of books and other items.

The city of mammoth lake is hands down one of the best cities for travelers in the world. The city has two different forms, one during the summers and the other during the winters.

Covered in vibrant hues during the summer seasons, the city becomes a white paradise during winters. During both the seasons, the city has a lot of adventure and fun activities to keep you engaged.

Its natural rocks and various rock formations will definitely stay in your mind for a long time.